Retail

Service outsources small stuff

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 2, 2015
As dealers everywhere press their service departments to improve customer-satisfaction results, some Florida stores are outsourcing their more troublesome tasks, such as detailing, porter work and lot maintenance.... Read More »

 

Dealers

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 2, 2015
Dealers featured this week include Michelle Primm, managing partner of Cascade Auto Group in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio; Rocky Franich, dealer at Marty Franich Ford-Lincoln in Watsonville, Calif.; Fred DeStefano, dealer principal at Infiniti of Massapequa in Massapequa, N.Y.; and Mark Winkler, general manager of Champion Ford Edinboro in Edinboro, Pa.... Read More »

 

Ford Flex scores well, but not on sales charts

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 1, 2015
The Ford Flex has a distinctive look, good reliability ratings and loyal owners. It's one of only two 2015 Ford nameplates recommended by Consumer Reports, and half of Flex buyers are new to Ford. But it was also the brand's slowest-selling U.S. nameplate last year, averaging just eight sales per dealer. And after seven years on the market, there's also no sign of a second generation in the offing.... Read More »

 

Golden Age for ultraluxury brands

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 1, 2015
Strong demand for ultraluxury brands -- driven by new models, improved U.S. and European economic conditions and a rising number of superwealthy -- has led forecasters to predict that overall global sales in the segment will grow by nearly 40 percent in the next five years. The bullish prediction is good news for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Volkswagen Group and BMW Group.... Read More »

 

Cold winter, hot sales start for 2015

12:01 am U.S. ET | Feb. 28, 2015
U.S. auto sales have started 2015 on a stronger note than expected, increasing the industry's chances of cracking 17 million vehicles this year for the first time since 2001. It's still early in the year, but analysts say there are plenty of positive signs, including record-high lease penetration in early February.... Read More »

 

Dodge dealers called out for 'unscrupulous' Hellcat sales practices by FCA exec

9:32 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2015
Fiat Chrysler has taken the unusual step of warning some of its most enthusiastic customers -- about some of its dealers. At issue is outsized consumer demand for the 2015 Dodge Charger and Challenger SRT Hellcats and dealer practices that the company says are “unscrupulous” and perhaps illegal.... Read More »

 

Snowbound New England dealers miss strong Feb. sales

1:15 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2015
As Massachusetts recovers from 100 inches of snow in recent weeks, many dealers there are reporting weaker-than-expected February sales, operational losses and lack of space because of massive snow piles. And New England missed out on an otherwise robust month for US auto sales.... Read More »

 

GM tells Ally that GM Financial will get all of Chevy's subsidized leases

6:30 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2015
General Motors has notified Ally Financial that it will steer all of its lease subsidies for the Chevrolet brand to captive finance company GM Financial, instead of sharing them among Ally, GM Financial, and to a lesser extent, U.S. Bank.... Read More »

 

JESSE SNYDER

Why does Ford race? Because it can

3:56 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2015
He's not yet taking orders from Jay Leno for the Ford GT and GT350R, but the head of Ford Performance, Dave Pericak, still has a full plate.... Read More »

 

Chevy Trax 'Hidden Gems' campaign leverages social media

3:21 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2015
Chevrolet is getting creative with its social media approach, using it to introduce a new vehicle. The 2015 Chevrolet Trax will be introduced in a social media campaign dubbed “Hidden Gems.”... Read More »

 

VW Group reports record profit on Audi, Porsche gains

Feb. 27, 2015 15:56 CET
VW Group said its operating profit rose 8.8 percent to a record 12.7 billion euros ($14.25 billion) last year on double-digit gains in sales of luxury Audi and Porsche models. The company said its sales revenue rose 2.8 percent to a new high of 202.5 billion euros.... Read More »

 

Group 1 names banker Doyle Arnold to its board

12:51 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 27, 2015
Group 1 Automotive has named a new director to its board seven days after another director resigned. The retailer said today its board of directors appointed Doyle Arnold, 66, as a Class I Director, effective immediately.... Read More »

 

HANS GREIMEL

Toyota, Mazda bet against each other in quest for 94 mpg

4:54 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 26, 2015
Japan’s largest auto manufacturer and one of its smallest are betting against each other on divergent paths to the same goal -- an incredible fuel economy rate pushing 94 mpg.... Read More »

 

Mini designers dream up a racy Clubman for 'Gran Turismo 6' video game

3:59 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 26, 2015
Mini has joined a growing list of automakers that have released high-performance concepts for “Gran Turismo 6” on the PlayStation 3 game system.... Read More »

 

Fiat Chrysler to review its digital agency business, report says

12:37 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 26, 2015
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has begun a digital agency review, people familiar with the matter told Advertising Age, an affiliate of Automotive News.... Read More »

 

Lada proves popular in Crimea's vacated car market

Feb. 26, 2015 13:40 CET
Lada, Russia's biggest car brand, has become a favorite in Crimea after its annexation by Vladimir Putin's government. The first official Lada dealership opened in October and local customers are now ordering up to 300 cars a month, compared with the 155 sold in 2013, when Crimea was part of Ukraine.... Read More »

 

GM cuts capacity, jobs in Indonesia, where Japanese dominate

7:32 am U.S. ET | Feb. 26, 2015
General Motors is to stop making cars in Indonesia, a battleground for global automakers in emerging Southeast Asia, closing an assembly plant, axing some 500 jobs and shifting its branding focus to SUVs.... Read More »

 

Daimler plans years of cost cuts to offset investments to reduce CO2 emissions

Feb. 26, 2015 10:26 CET
Daimler plans to offset higher costs for technology to cut CO2 emissions with material cost savings for at least the next few years, Chief Financial Officer Bodo Uebber said.... Read More »

 

Sonic is most-improved in Q4 F&I revenue

11:22 am U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
Sonic Automotive Inc. posted the biggest increase in average F&I revenue per vehicle in the fourth quarter among the six public new-car retail groups, the tallies, completed today, show.... Read More »

 

Santander Consumer USA to pay $9.35 million settlement over military repos

3:07 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
Santander Consumer USA will pay at least $9.35 million to resolve charges that it improperly repossessed the cars of members of the military, the U.S. Department of Justice said today.... Read More »

 

U.S. auto sales roar toward strongest February since 2002

2:00 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
U.S. auto sales are on pace for the best February since 2002, forecasters say, even as relentless snow slowed demand in the Northeast. February is expected to mark the 12th consecutive month of year-over-year gains for the industry. Analysts said sales have been minimally affected by rising gasoline prices and a work stoppage at West Coast ports that could reduce March inventories of some vehicles imported from Asia.... Read More »

 

Lithia Q4 net income jumps 50% as it makes acquisitions top priority

9:38 am U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
Strong sales across all divisions and the integration of its purchase last year of DCH Auto Group pushed Lithia Motors' net income up 50 percent during the fourth quarter.... Read More »

 

Consumer Portfolio gains volume; retraining continues after FTC action

10:57 am U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
Subprime auto lender Consumer Portfolio Services reported strong volume growth in the fourth quarter and for all of 2014, despite a run-in with the Federal Trade Commission last year.... Read More »

 

Lender groups want answers from the CFPB

12:15 pm U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
A letter sent last week by the American Financial Services Association and other trade associations to Richard Cordray, director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, was aimed at prodding the CFPB to publicly respond to a study AFSA commissioned last year.... Read More »

 

Reports of growing auto loan delinquencies are overblown, credit bureaus say

10:39 am U.S. ET | Feb. 25, 2015
Despite media notions that U.S. auto loan delinquencies are accelerating, they are in fact trending flat, credit reporting bureaus Equifax and Experian Automotive said last week.
... Read More »

 

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